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Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

THE STATE'S RELATIONS TO RELIGION.          509
16, the crime of using the name Jehovah with irreverence and
abuse, by stoning ; while other kinds of cursing were left to
the judge to visit with penalty (#., v., 15, comp. Exod., xxii.,
28). Other crimes against religion, as worship of idols and
false gods, partaking in heathenish worship, witchcraft and
divination, profanation of the Sabbath, false claims to pro-
phetic inspiration, had their appropriate penalties. In the
                                                                                                                                 i
laws of Manu crimes against Brahmins are punished with!
special seventy. Thus " a once-born man who insults a twice-
born with gross invectives ought to have his tongue slit, for
he sprang from the lowest parts of Brahma ; " and "if he
mentions their names and classes with contumely, as if he says,
' Oh, Devadatta, thou refuse of Brahmins/ an iron style, ten
fingers long, was to be thrust red-hot into his mouth." (viii.,
270,^271; comp. 273, 283, Haughton's Jones'transl.) The
laws of other heathen nations show that religion was protected
by criminal law, but still more does this appear in Christian
codes. The offences against God and religion under English
law may be found in Blackstone, book iv., ch. iv. Some of
them are altogether obsolete, others are approaching to that
condition. The crime of apostasy, or of denial on the part
of one who had been a professed believer in Christianity,
exposed the person in question to several disqualifications,
as late as 9 and 10 William III., and on a second offence to
imprisonment for three years. Heresy, also, with the writ
de heretico comburendo supporting the law, in force until 29
Charles II., shows that protestant England followed Catholic
precedents. Blackstone does, not wholly object to laws against
propagating heresy. Laws, also, against nonconformists and
papists were enacted to protect the established church and
the civil state. Laws against sorcery and witchcraft continued
until the ninth year of George II. (1735). Laws against blas-
phemy, swearing and cursing, simony, religious imposture,
desecration of the Lord's day by work, are still, we believe,
on the statute book ; and in similar legislation the first Amer-
ican colonies, especially the puritan, followed the mother-
country. But a great part of all these crimes have disap-